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Ofcom to have words with Bauer

Ofcom is to discuss with Bauer Media about its compliance procedures after the regulator found one of its stations in breach of the broadcasting code for the second time in six months.

It comes as the Win with Sky competition on Hallam FM attracted one complaint from a listener who questioned the validity of the sponsor credit.

Back in April, Hallam FM was found in breach of the advertising code for failure to gain appropriate approval in advance for the broadcast of a Sky sponsor credit which contained an advertising claim.

Then in September, the station ran a similar competition with Sky, which contained similar messages about its claim to let you "choose the type of TV you want, without paying for stuff you don’t".

This time round, the presenter read out a long paragraph describing the prize and the services offered by Sky:

[blockquote]Sky let you choose the type of TV you want, without paying for stuff you don’t, as Sky have six entertainment packs to choose from. Do you want get under the skin of your type of culture? Choose the TV you want with Sky’s Style and Culture pack, or for drama and entertainment choose Sky’s variety pack.[/blockquote]
Ofcom said the information clearly promoted the sponsor’s products/services and included an advertising claim (“Sky let you choose the type of TV you want, without paying for stuff you don’t…”) and product descriptions. Promotional references to the sponsor and its products/services are prohibited in programming and the feature was therefore in breach of Rule 9.5 of the Code.

In a report today, the regulator said: "In view of Hallam FM’s previous breach of Section Nine of the Code, and the breach recorded here, Ofcom intends to discuss Bauer’s compliance processes with them in more detail."

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